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Seize Power Retain Power

   2021    History
Ten years after waging a bloody campaign to gain control over his own province, powerful samurai warlord Oda Nobunaga has seized much of Central Japan, including the nation’s capital, Kyoto. Now, driven by a towering ambition, he dreams of crushing the powerful clans who still oppose his rule. And for the first time in over a century, uniting all of Japan under one banner. But Nobunaga’s legendary brutality has caused widespread anger. Across the nation, powerful enemies now plot his demise.
Series: Age of Samurai: Battle for Japan

The Demon King

   2021    History
Fueled by a ruthless and maniacal ambition to conquer Central Japan, Nobunaga has destroyed many enemies who have underestimated him. His vicious military campaigns to weaken the powerful Buddhist institutions have turned large swathes of the population against him. As Nobunaga's cruelty intensifies, some generals begin to question his command, leading to a betrayal that alters the political landscape forever.
Series: Age of Samurai: Battle for Japan

The Last Empire

   2016    History
China's last empire, the Qing, lasted from 1644 to 1912. It began in violence and war as the Manchus swept down from the north, but invaders became emperors, with three generations of one family ruling the country. Among them, Michael Wood argues, was China's greatest emperor - Kangxi. Under the Qing, China doubled in size to include Xinjiang in the far west, as well as Mongolia and Tibet, creating the essential shape of China today. The new dynasty tolerated a diversity of cultures and religions, including Islam. In Kaifeng, Michael visits a women's mosque with a female imam, a delightful scene that ends with laughter and selfies! The Qing also undertook huge cultural enterprises. At a traditional printing house where the wood blocks are hand-carved, we see how the Complete Tang Poems were reproduced - all 48,000 of them. We travel through the wintry countryside to a remote village where a hardy audience watch open-air opera in the snow and visit a painter's studio, and 'storytelling' houses in Yangzhou. In the 18th century, China was arguably the greatest economy in the world, and we get a fabulous sense of the rich culture that came with prosperity. But then came the clash with the British, in the first Opium War, when a British expedition destroyed the Qing navy and extracted territory and trading rights. We leave with a glimpse of the future. 'Every dynasty has risen and declined,' says Michael, 'and has needed new life to regenerate, and this time the catalyst was the British.' Among the ports China ceded was an almost uninhabited island, Hong Kong, one of today's greatest financial centres, and Shanghai, a small town then but now one of the greatest cities in world.
Series: The Story of China

The Medici: Makers of Modern Art

   2008    Art
Andrew Graham-Dixon reveals how the Medici family transformed Florence through sculpture, painting and architecture and created a world where masterpieces fetch millions today. Without the money and patronage of the Medici we might never have heard of artists such as Donatello, Michelangelo or Botticelli, and Graham-Dixon examines how a family of shadowy, corrupt businessmen, driven by greed and ambition, became the financial engine behind the Italian Renaissance.

The Pirate Republic

   2021    History
There had been other pirate settlements in different places but none of them had worked quite the same way that Nassau did. There was a fort there. People stayed, they built a community on the land. Larger and larger numbers of pirate-minded people were showing up there and starting to develop an economy around themselves. Men like Edward Thatch, later known as Blackbeard, his sidekick, Black Caesar, a former slave, and the pied pirate that led them all there, Captain Benjamin Hornigold.
In the second episode, tensions rise between Benjamin Hornigold and Henry Jennings; their rivalry takes a new direction when Hornigold declares Nassau a pirate republic.
Series: The Lost Pirate Kingdom

The Power of Doubt

   2017    History
In the last episode, Al-Khalili turns detective, hunting for clues that show how the scientific revolution that took place in the 16th and 17th centuries in Europe had its roots in the earlier world of medieval Islam. He travels across Iran, Syria and Egypt to discover the huge astronomical advances made by Islamic scholars through their obsession with accurate measurement and coherent and rigorous mathematics.He then visits Italy to see how those Islamic ideas permeated into the west and ultimately helped shape the works of the great European astronomer Copernicus, and investigates why science in the Islamic world appeared to go into decline after the 16th and 17th centuries, only for it to re-emerge in the present day. Al-Khalili ends his journey in the Royan Institute in the Iranian capital Tehran, looking at how science is now regarded in the Islamic world
Series: Science and Islam
Secrets of the Universe

Secrets of the Universe

2021  Science
The Last Dance

The Last Dance

2020  Culture
Atom

Atom

2007  Science
Life

Life

2009  Nature
Order and Disorder

Order and Disorder

2012  Science